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Jackson Window Replacement Guide
If your windows have you singing the blues in “The City With Soul” due to blazing heat pouring in through their panes, then it might just be time for a window replacement. Though a renovation of this size typically runs between $10,000 and $20,000, most homeowners will jump at the chance to increase their personal comfort level and their home’s energy efficiency. When you add in that many of these homeowners, also, see their property values increase substantially, some upwards of 80 percent of their renovation budget according to the National Association of Realtors, it makes a compelling argument for anyone still on the fence.
The Jackson Window Replacement Guide will help you navigate the window replacement process by teaching you how to recognize when a replacement is necessary in your home, what materials will best serve your needs, and what building code regulations will affect your construction.
How to Know When a Window Replacement is Necessary in Your Jackson Home
Homes tend to shift and settle over time which can cause undue strain on your windows. Combine that with Jackson’s harsh, humid climate, and it can spell disaster for the integrity of your windows’ frame. Swollen or warped windows are difficult, if not impossible, to open, nor are they likely to create a solid barrier against the outside world. Unfortunately, there is not much you can do to improve windows of this nature, other than adding temporary weather stripping over open cracks, and it would behoove you to have them replaced for safety reasons. If your window frames have begun to rot in certain areas, you can put off replacing them for a while longer by repairing the damaged area with epoxy. However, if the rotten segment has extended to most of the window frame, you should definitely not put off having the whole window replaced because if you do, that damage could extend to the walls of your home, causing the structural integrity of your exterior walls to become questionable.
If you feel the cold winter breezes and intense summer sun through your window panes, it is likely time to upgrade to windows that can offer your home–and yourself–better protection from the elements. In fact, Energy Star has found that this protection leads to impressive savings, too, with the average homeowner seeing their utility bills drop by 12 percent when they chose to replace single-pane windows with Energy Star certified windows. When you quantify these savings with your increased property value and any state and federal incentives that you may qualify for, it’s easy that your return on investment (ROI) will be substantial.
Window Materials Matter in Jackson
The only way to ensure the best ROI is by opting for windows that meet Energy Star’s and the 2012 International Energy Conservation Code’s (IECC) strict parameters. In large part thanks to these organizations, a consumer now has a method for understanding how well a window can be expected to function within any climate based on the U-value and Solar Heat Gain Coefficient (SHGC). U-values analyze the rate at which a home’s internal air is transferred through the fenestration, while the SHGC evaluates how well a window can block out solar heat from ever entering the home. Although the optimal SHGC value will be dependant on Jackson’s climate specifically, lower U-values will always mean better insulation for your home. Virtually all of the windows that achieve appropriate U-values will be gas-filled, multi-pane windows since they offer the best level of protection from the elements. Finally, these windows will, also, come with a low emissivity (low E) metallic coating that blocks additional levels of solar radiation from entering your home. Just how much heat is reflected back is dependant upon whether the low E is low-, medium-, or high-solar-gain rated. Due to Jackson’s weather, the average home should look for windows that are gas-filled, triple-pane windows with a U-value of 0.22 or less, a SHGC less than or equal to 0.25, and a low-solar-gain low E.
Framing materials have really gone through an impressive technological advancement over the past decade, and the market is now filled with many energy efficient options that can fit any budget. In Jackson, Energy Star windows will need to have thermally improved or insulated nonmetal frames, like wood, vinyl, or fiberglass. While solid wood frames will offer 30 to 40 years of reliability and a classic aesthetic, they, also, come with the highest price tag. Vinyl, on the other hand, is usually the least expensive option and is virtually maintenance-free, but is susceptible to dimensional instability and deterioration under extreme heat. Across the board, fiberglass tends to sit right in the middle of both of these options, being moderately durable and moderately priced. A knowledgeable professional will be able to evaluate your home’s orientation and level of shade, and be able to offer you suggestions as to which material will best fit your home specifically.
Jackson Permits, Inspections, and Fees
The City of Jackson requires that your contractor apply for a building permit before beginning any work on your home. A completed permit application and a fee is usually all that is required, assuming that no structural changes are planned, and can be submitted for approval at 200 S. President Street, Suite 204, Jackson, MS 39201. You contractor will, also, need to schedule an inspection with a city inspector in order to ensure that all renovation work was completed to code. This appointment can be scheduled by calling either (601) 960-1662 or (601) 960-1663. If you have any questions regarding the building permit process, contact the Permit Counter at (601) 960-1167.